Archive for December, 2015

The top 10 Ask Sid questions of 2015!

December 30th, 2015
Ask your question here The International Wine & Food Society

The top 10 Ask Sid questions of 2015

Thanks for all your thought provoking questions during 2015. I appreciated the wide variety of items that have been raised. Please keep your enquiries on any wine and food topic coming for 2016!

1. Arsenic in cheap wine? (3.25.2015)


2. Best Wine with roast turkey? (10.21.2015)


3. Sweet Potato vs Yam (1.28.2015)


4. Alternatives to Chablis? (6.3.2015)


5. A cost-friendly alternative to Prosecco? (5.27.2015)


6. Sauternes wine & food pairing (3.4.2015)


7. Breaking the wine rules (6.17.2015)


8. Blind Tasting Skills (11.18.2015)


9. Port reinvention? (10.14.2015)


10. Aging wine underwater? (4.29.2015)


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Sid’s top 10 entries for 2015!

December 28th, 2015

Top 10 entries from Sid Cross for 2015

Quite a diverse selection of wine postings on IWFS drew your attention during 2015. However it was enlightening to see you were most interested in trends. Your top two hits were the wine trends for the 1990s and the 1980s! Now we need an article spotlighting the top new wine trends for 2000-2010. We thank you for your following in 2015 and for your helpful feedback.

1. Foxtrot Vineyards Pinot Noir – World Class (11.16.2015)


2. Barolo – The Hot Collector Wine (2.23.2015)


3. Chateau Margaux: What are their best vintages? (7.13.2015)


4. B.C. Bottle Shock (8.31.2015)


5. What is a 100 Point Wine? (10.12.2015)


6. Domaine Armand Rousseau Gevrey-Chambertin (6.22.2015)


7. Bordeaux Top Twin Vintages (2.9.2015)


8. 2005 Bordeaux: A Vintage of Natural Balance 10 Years On (3.23.2015)


9. 10 Memorable Older Wines in 2014 (1.5.2015)


10. Magical 45th Parallel of Latitude (1.26.2015)


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Top 10 posts for 2015!

December 26th, 2015

Top 10 food and wine posts for 2015

By Joseph Temple

As a guest blogger for nearly two years, it has been a great privilege to write for the International Wine & Food Society.  And after looking at Google Analytics, it was interesting to see what posts this year received the largest amount of hits.  So for the last entry of 2015, let’s have a look at the top 10 entries — decided by you!

1. Top 3 wine trends of the 90s (5.29.2015)


2. Looking back at 5 wine
trends from the 1980s (5.1.2015)


3. 10 facts about Prosecco – the sparkling wine that’s taking the world by storm! (4.3.2015)


4. St. Pierre and Miquelon: The original gangster’s paradise (2.20.2015)


5. A look back at Falcon Crest (1.16.2015)


6. 10 food and wine trends from the 1970s (9.18.2015)


7. The Wine of Patriots: 5 ways Madeira shaped the American Revolution (3.6.2015)


8. Wine & 5 Forgettable Presidents (1.9.2015)


9. The Oyster Bay atmosphere: Wining and Dining in TR’s White House (5.8.2015)


10. 10 interesting facts about the Argentine wine industry (5.15.2015)


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Ask Sid: Port for Christmas Dinner?

December 23rd, 2015
Ask your question here The International Wine & Food Society

Ask Sid: Port for Christmas Dinner

Question: Opening a couple of bottles of Port after our Christmas turkey dinner and wonder how long they will last if we don’t finish them off that evening.

Answer: Nice treat. A very appropriate time to open Port as you take time to relax and reflect with family & friends. I like it served with toasted walnuts and pistachios. Need more information on the specific Ports you plan to open. Hopefully an outstanding vintage with some age which are drinking beautifully now like 1963, 1966, 1970, 1977, or 1994! Vintage Port throws sediment and needs to be decanted before service and will oxidize the quickest. Still if you pour the remains into a small bottle and refrigerate it should probably will be OK for about a week – younger vintages holding better than older ones. Late bottled vintage (LBV) or tawny are longer in wood and sediment is not an issue. All ports are fortified with grape spirit to stop the fermentation leaving some natural sugar and raising the alcohol level to around 20 degrees. Therefore all ports are usually sturdier than table wines with a lower alcohol. Leftover LBV or tawny will deteriorate more slowly if refrigerated because they have been already exposed to more oxygen while spending a longer time in wood and should be OK for about a month. Enjoy!

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Most Reliable Restaurant Review Websites

December 21st, 2015

Most Reliable Restaurant Review Websites

Like many of you I seem to get lots of enquiries asking for a restaurant (or hotel, winery or tour company) recommendation for not only Vancouver but for other places around the world. I am somewhat flattered to be asked and pleased to try and help. However in this digital age I wonder why more people don’t rely on their own searches from the numerous critics on the web and the most popular websites out there. Must be a question of how reliable they are and whether in fact the postings are all real. Raises also several legal questions including free speech and who is posting and who is monitoring. Are overly positive posts being made by public relations agents for the establishment or strongly negative ones by competitors or ex-employees with their own agenda? Much more personal to rely on a close friend or an IWFS member who can be trusted for reliable tips from their home city. Magazines and local newspapers can sometimes be good references for the best current up to date information. There is an interesting site that lists and reviews their Top Ten Restaurant Review Websites at They list Zagat, Yelp, Urbanspoon, Gayot,, and Fodor’s as their top 6 but leave out of their list Trip Advisor, OpenTable, Chowhound, Foursquare, and others. Nothing beats personal knowledge of a place. However, I will sometimes look at Trip Advisor, Wine Spectator and Zagat for a rough indication taking these reviews usually with a grain of salt. Vancouver Magazine and do a good job in this part of the world. Do you have a personal recommendation for what helps you make your decision on which restaurant to visit locally and while travelling?

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